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  • What if we could engineer a gigantic megastructure

  • capable of harvesting every bit of the Sun's energy?

  • Something known as a Dyson sphere.

  • This is WHAT IF,

  • and here's what would happen

  • if we could build a Dyson sphere

  • around the Sun.

  • The idea of a Dyson sphere was...

  • well, stolen from aliens.

  • In 1960, astrophysicist Freeman Dyson theorized another civilization

  • that found a way to meet their ever-increasing energy and space demands.

  • They rearranged their solar system.

  • This hypothetical advanced civilization built a hollow sphere around their own sun,

  • and provided themselves with an incredible amount of energy

  • and habitable real estate.

  • How would we go about building this space-level structure?

  • Theoretically, if we built a Dyson sphere,

  • we'd have access to a colossal 400 septillion watts of solar energy.

  • That's a trillion times more power than our entire civilization consumes today.

  • The problem is, no known material is strong enough

  • to handle all the space radiation.

  • And even if we created one in very large quantities,

  • a tiny gravitational pull towards the Sun would make our solid sphere uninhabitable.

  • Not to mention that it would be totally unstable.

  • Every meteor strike would push a part of the sphere toward the star.

  • But all these issues can be solved with a simple adjustment.

  • Instead of building a solid Dyson sphere,

  • we could build a Dyson swarm.

  • A myriad of solar collectors with their individual orbits around the Sun.

  • Let's start with a small station.

  • One that's able to provide the energy needed for this construction project.

  • We'd begin on Mercury.

  • It would become our space mine for the iron and oxygen we'd need.

  • From those elements, we'd make highly reflective solar collectors.

  • The giant mirrors would reflect light into a small solar power plant.

  • From there, it would beam the energy to where we need it.

  • We'd probably demolish Mercury entirely

  • before we moved on to Venus, Mars and the outer planets.

  • Even nearby asteroids would be decimated.

  • However, even just deconstructing Mercury

  • would supply us with enough energy to power up our supercomputers,

  • and boost interstellar exploration.

  • Maybe we'd even build Earth-like oases -

  • large rotating space colonies in the habitable zone of our Solar System.

  • Maybe, if we were lucky, we'd find other, more efficient sources of energy

  • to help us master space travel.

  • Like artificially generated black holes.

  • But that's a story for another WHAT IF.

What if we could engineer a gigantic megastructure

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What If We Built a Dyson Sphere Around the Sun?

  • 78 5
    Amy.Lin   posted on 2020/08/11
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